American Red Cross Family Weather Emergency Plan
Develop a Family Weather Emergency Plan that includes the following:
Decide where to go if at home, school, work, outdoors, or in a car when a flood, severe thunderstorm, or tornado warning is issued.
Update these plans every school year and as places of employment and residence change.
Disaster Supply Kit
Be sure everyone in the family knows where your Family Disaster Supply Kit is located.
During extreme heat, be sure to include the following in your Kit: extra water or juice, sun screen, and wide brimmed hats.
Designate a friend or relative outside your town or area as your family contact in the event you are separated from family members during a flood, tornado, or in case a storm knocks out your electricity.
In the case of a tropical storm or hurricane, designate someone outside the area affected by the tropical storm or hurricane as your family contact.
Agree upon a place where the family members can meet if separated.
Get a good map and plan various evacuation routes, avoiding low-lying areas. This is especially valuable in the event of flooding from rivers, streams, tropical storms, or flash floods.
Do several test runs of different routes.
In the event of a flash flood, remember that you will not be able to evacuate. Instead, immediately seek higher ground.
For times of extreme heat, identify locations where you can escape sweltering conditions for hours at a time: a mall, a movie theater, or the home of a friend or relative.
Your Family Pet Plan
For preparedness information, contact your local Red Cross chapter. Included are related sites and a brochure on caring for your pet during an emergency.
Content was contributed by the American Red Cross.
Tips for conserving water:
Do not water lawns, wash cars, or fill swimming pools
Don't allow children to play with the hose or sprinklers, just for fun
Use a broom instead of water to clean outdoors
Check faucets and pipes for leaks
Turn off the water while shaving or brushing your teeth
Take shorter showers, or better yet, take baths
Run dishwashers and washing machines only when full
When washing dishes by hand, fill the rinse sink, rather than allowing water to flow over cleaned dishes
Store a bottle of drinking water in the fridge
Rinse fruits and vegetables in bowl or sink full of water
From: Illinois American Water Company
Tips for food safety during a power outage:
If the power is out for less than 2 hours, then the food in your refrigerator and freezer will be safe to consume.
While the power is out, keep the refrigerator and freezer doors closed as much as possible to keep food cold for longer.
If the power is out for longer than 2 hours
A freezer that is half full will hold food safely for up to 24 hours. A full freezer will hold food safely for 48 hours. Do not open the freezer door if you can avoid it.
Refrigerator: Pack milk, other dairy products, meat, fish, eggs, gravy, and spoilable leftovers into a cooler surrounded by ice. Inexpensive Styrofoam coolers are fine for this purpose.
Use a digital quick-response thermometer to check the temperature of your food right before you cook or eat it. Throw away any food that has a temperature of more than 40 degrees Fahrenheit.